Friday, 27 March 2020

ARTICLE 10 - Part 3: An Outbreak of Terrible Communication & Leadership

“We engage in a microscopic war against parasites that could annihilate us.”

-From Episode 15 of the Podcast-Audiobook
(Originally Published April 14, 2019)


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Viable Underdogs concerns itself with anything that is a Type 1, or global, issue. You can check an outline of all Viable Underdogs books and materials in this post. As always, I strongly recommend starting with the book, Renegades of Disruption, first:
Book Links & Other Viable Underdogs Material


This is Part 3 of our continuing series that compares the ongoing Coronavirus Crisis to other crises like Sustainability. Here are links to Parts 1 & 2:

Part 1

Part 2



UPDATE: April 4, 2020: A report that outlines Taiwan's strategy and other info have been included at the end of the article.

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At the end of Part 2 in Uncage Human Ingenuity, I mentioned my concerns about our inability to communicate global messages. Here was the exact quote (typo and all):

“Not so much due to the Sustainability Crisis, but it became more and more apparent that our ability to communicate global messages [and] ideas was compromised. This is a profoundly significant notion that can carry dire consequences.” **

Compromised Communication

As outlined throughout a lot of the research presented within Viable Underdogs, our ability to successfully communicate is compromised. The book, Uncage Human Ingenuity, displays this on the subject of the Sustainability Crisis, and Parts 1 and 2 of this article display this on the Coronavirus Crisis.

Even the fact-checking website, Snopes, is having trouble keeping on top of the high level of misinformation and disinformation on the ongoing global crisis:

https://futurism.com/the-byte/snopes-coronavirus-misinformation

I have mentioned fact-checking websites like Snopes (www.snopes.com) as far back as EPISODE 8. Snopes is a popular resource used by responsible journalists to verify their information prior to publishing (Shah, D., 2019).

The high level of misinformation means there is far, far too much noise which vastly decreases the success rate of my second launch attempt (See 
Article 9 - Part 2). This is the reason that I will likely have to proceed with the second stage in this launch, but I’ll be updating all of that in an upcoming article.

There are no shortages of individuals and organizations that appear to trivialize the impacts of the ongoing Coronavirus Crisis. After all, if you’re a healthy individual, the odds lean very heavily you’ll survive exposure to this virus. However, this is a very shortsighted opinion to hold since a global crisis of this magnitude has the potential to create unforeseen consequences:

-It can create chaos throughout many global supply chains, including our ability to globally ensure adequate (and crucial) supplies of food and water. Although some still enjoy the luxury of easy access to clean water, there are more and more water shortages occurring globally. (See References section)

-It can initiate a massive global recession (or depression) on a similar magnitude of the Crisis in Economics that occurred in 2008. As a reminder, some experts are suggesting our ability to absorb another such global economic crisis is also compromised (Stewart, E., 2018). Even if our economic systems can absorb the impacts of this crisis, it leaves them far more vulnerable from future problems, which will increase in severity and frequency if the solutions I present are not implemented in a timely manner.

-It causes massive strain on Healthcare systems, many of which, according to Harvard Business, are also already in crisis (Harvard Business Review. 2018). This means that access to crucial life-saving emergency services can be heavily restricted or even removed if the Healthcare system fails in a particular region.

-It causes massive disruptions to everyday life, particularly in extreme cases, where governments are left with little alternative but to enact some form of heavy military or police enforcement to ensure the general population adheres to quarantine protocols. 
-It also causes many issues that can compound one another. I provide an example of this later in the article with the company, Airbnb. 

Here’s another example of an economic factor that many nations, like Canada, are quickly attempting to reactively deal with:

https://www.canada.ca/en/department-finance/news/2020/03/introduces-canada-emergency-response-benefit-to-help-workers-and-businesses.html

This article, released by the Department of Finance Canada says the following about the current Employment Insurance system:

“The EI system was not designed to process the unprecedented high volume of applications received in the past week.”

Though I commend the Government of Canada for its overall response (it has responded much more quickly and effectively than other nations), this is still indicative of reactive thinking rather than proactive thinking. Once again, if a strategy had been created prior to the crisis occurring, then problems such as these could be mitigated to a large degree and possibly even prevented from occurring altogether.

This type of global crisis is a no-win scenario for every individual, organization, business, and nation on the globe. Our economics and supply chains are so interdependent that no entity is insulated from the impacts of a crisis of this potential magnitude. However, our communication system is compromised, which means that not every individual, organization, business, and nation on the globe has successfully received this message. If they did, then there would not be conflicting messages on the current severity of the crisis. Just ask the fact-checking website Snopes I mentioned earlier. They can’t even keep up. If that isn’t further evidence of a compromised global communication system, I don’t know what is.

Are your associative barriers low enough to understand that this extends to more than just Sustainability and Coronavirus into every Type 1 (Global) problem? At the end of the article, I’ll explore this in a bit more detail.


Why isn’t everyone getting the message?

As you’ll notice in Parts 1 and 2, there are several factors that compound one another to result in this compromised global communication, but one of the largest contributing factors goes back to a story you’re likely familiar with:


The Boy Who Cried Wolf

For those who many not know they story, it’s basically about how the more people are exposed to deception, the less likely they are to take action when it’s actually necessary. Regardless of where you reside on the political spectrum (See 
Article 1: The Fall of Journalism), you’re likely aware of just how polarizing and inaccurate many global news sources have become. Many of them are constantly ‘crying wolf’ with clickbait-type stories and create unnecessary amplification of many issues (See: Article 12 - Part 2). 

The more these types of click-bait type stories are run, the greater the possibility that the general public reacts the same way as they do when the wolf is actually present - by not taking action. This is otherwise known as Outrage Fatigue.


Outrage Fatigue

Outrage Fatigue was briefly mentioned in the books, Uncage Human Ingenuity and Renegades of Disruption, and it basically means what the name implies. Much like the townsfolk crew tired and fatigued at the deception of the boy who cried wolf, so too is the general public tired and fatigued at the the deception behind the click-bait nature of modern journalism. Here’s an article that explores this idea in greater detail:

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/opinion/modern-outrage-is-making-it-harder-to-bettersociety/article38179877/


Update on the Strategy Presented in Part 2

In Part 2 of this article, I recommended the attachment of ‘stickied’ type notes from organizations and individuals from all 5 Roles back to the organization in charge to correct communication and clarify leadership. As always, I am not alone in this idea. Some businesses and organizations have already taken it upon themselves to do exactly this. Reddit has done this (but directs their audience to the CDC), and even Spotify and Tinder is also doing this within their apps:




To clarify, I provide these examples to show that most organizations would likely participate in the opt-in system I propose. The strategy I propose would also ensure far more consistency and would ensure that these are uploaded far sooner than what occurred in this crisis.

Another entity I would add would be streaming services like Netflix, due to the large amount of exposure some have on platforms like these.


The World of 2002 vs. the World of 2020


There are some major differences in our world in the short time between the last time the world faced a similar global threat in the SARS outbreak of 2002-2003.


Tourism in an age of Globalization

If we compare the global tourism statistics from 2002-2003 (during the SARS outbreak) to the statistics of 2019, then one thing becomes evidently clear:

https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/ST.INT.DPRT?end=2018&start=1995

According to The World Bank,the number of international departures grew from about 760 million in 2002-2003 to 1.56 billion in 2018. So, there was double the tourists traveling around the world at the start of the Coronavirus outbreak than there was at the start of SARS.

This statistic does not account for another crucial factor; the increase of international departures from developing nations like China:

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/comment/rise-of-the-chinese-tourist/

The previous article cites COTRI (China Outbound Tourism Research Institute) and the UNWTO (United Nations World Tourism Organization) for the data it includes. According to the article, the number of Chinese tourists has increased from 16.6 Million in 2002 to 149.7 Million in 2018 - about 9 times the amount of tourism in 16 years. The speed of globalization is compounding our ability to address these types of crises. A major contributing factor easing the spread of viruses around the globe is international travel and work.

This means that in less than 20 years, two major problems are compounding the challenges behind these microscopic threats: compromised global communication and historically unprecedented rates of international tourism. With this in mind, it makes sense that tracking any travelers at the very start of an outbreak would help in mitigating the damage caused by this style of Type 1 problem. This is why phone apps are already being proposed as a strategy to deal with this:

https://futurism.com/coronavirus-app-mit-safe-paths

https://www.france24.com/en/20200320-selfie-app-to-keep-track-of-quarantined-poles


https://futurism.com/countries-tap-phone-data-track-covid19

In order to proactively deal with this type of crisis, the minute the outbreak is known (In the case of Coronavirus this was in December, 2019), anyone currently traveling internationally could download an app similar to this style to better track the spread of the virus. This level of tracking would likely mitigate the majority of the damage caused by the virus.

There are two approaches that can be attempted with this app: One is mandatory, the other is an opt-in system. At international customs, many countries have removed some of the freedoms that are present within the nation itself (Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada, 2018).

When I leave my country, I do so knowing there are inherent risks and sacrifices. One such sacrifice is a certain level of privacy and freedom I am afforded within my nation’s borders. Knowing this, adding in a phone app like this could be added to the loss of privacy a person can expect when they travel internationally. However, this could also be released as an opt-in system. After all, the greater the economic toll (not to mention the loss of life) this crisis takes on the world, the more likely the general population will want to prevent a reoccurence. After all, as Rama Nemani likes to remind us of what should seem obvious: “Once people realize there is a problem, they tend to fix it.”

If the current trends and statistics are any indication, international travel will only increase over time, which means the risks and collateral damage of viral outbreaks will increase as well. Knowing that this is another style of no-win scenario, then it is more than likely that the majority of international travelers will download and use such a tracking app of their own accord. After all, it’s much better to do that than it is to quarantine yourself at home for possible months on end.

There are a lot more specifics to this type of proactive approach that I would like to elaborate on, but this will have to wait for another time.



Back to the Economic Impacts

As I have repeatedly stated, the communication of the Coronavirus Crisis is rather compromised. This creates a whole range of problems, one of them being that the average person may not understand the level of urgency based on different factors that Type 1 global problems can severely aggravate. This won’t be a popular opinion, but mitigating the financial impacts of the crisis is just as important as mitigating the loss of life. If the crisis continues to be managed and communicated as terribly as it has been, then you’ll unfortunately soon learn about these economic factors. It’s appearing more and more likely that this crisis will have financial impacts similar to the 2008 Economic Crisis. This is troubling given that some experts don’t think our global economy has a much greater tolerance for the amount of abuse we continually subject it to. Even if we are able to absorb the possible trillions in financial damages, what about the other crises that are still ongoing like Sustainability?

We’re choosing a high-risk strategy where we are constantly rolling the dice for the fate of our planet. While I applaud the metaphorical cojones our species has in engaging in this high-risk behaviour, it will eventually lead to our downfall. Here are a few articles I encourage you to read if you are unfamiliar with the interdependence of our global economic system:

https://www.bbc.com/news/business-51706225

https://www.bloomberg.com/graphics/2020-coronavirus-pandemic-global-economic-risk/


There were also articles previously mentioned in Parts 1 and 2:

https://hbr.org/2020/02/how-coronavirus-could-impact-the-global-supply-chain-by-mid-march

https://www.bbc.com/news/business-51539322

And here’s another example, mentioned earlier in this article, of a global problem that can further compound existing economic issues:

https://www.businessinsider.com/airbnb-hosts-upset-that-theyre-paying-for-its-cancellation-policy-2020-3

Airbnb is a global organization, which means that any Airbnb host that depends on the funds they make to either support themselves or pay off their mortgage have now lost that source of income (Givetash, L, & Kane, L., 2016). If further economic stresses then impact their main source of income, then it’s likely there will be foreclosures soon occurring if those hosts cannot afford to pay their bills for the length of the crisis.

This leads to an unpleasant dilemma that governments and taxpayers already faced in the 2008 Economic Crisis - whether to approve financial assistance and other bailouts to these types of businesses. Airbnb has already contacted the U.S. Congress seeking financial assistance and tax breaks (Eaglesham, J., Grind, K., & Rana, P., 2020). If this crisis worsens, the number of businesses doing the same will also likely increase.


Other Type 1 Problems


Viable Underdogs initially targeted the Sustainability Crisis as the first Type 1 problem that should be corrected due to the scale and magnitude of its worst-case scenarios. However, this does not mean that there are not other crises that can occur, nor more severe problems that can arise. Here’s a short list of other Type 1 problems (and once again, I would like to remind you that all of these problems can be addressed - assuming anyone decides to hire me for my Type 1 Consultancy services - I’m already repairing the first one as a freebie to prove my expertise - however, it only works if you decide to participate in the ‘repair’ by forwarding this ‘altruistic chain letter’):


Compromised Global Communication

Our ability to globally communicate during crises is compromised and we have also lost the ability to successfully communicate the possibility of national security threats. The Podcast-Audiobook and Uncage Human Ingenuity diagnose and repair this communication problem (But this requires YOUR help by sharing these ideas on your online and offline networks).


Deepfakes and Other Rapidly Advancing Technology  Like A.I.

We can not currently effectively communicate long-term crisis messages to the general public, such as our Sustainability Crisis. We also cannot effectively communicate national security threats like Deep Fake Technology:

https://futurism.com/pioneer-perfect-deepfake-six-months-away

I strongly encourage you to read the article and research this technology on your own time. This tech could have global consequences since anyone could make a video of anything their warped imaginations could conjure up. Take a moment to see how creative you could get. ;)


Epidemics / Pandemics

I assume there’s no need to go into more detail.


Coronal Mass Ejections

Solar storms have the potential to wreak havoc on the world’s global electric infrastructure. Such storms have occurred in the past, but the damage caused were rather minimal compared to a worst-case scenario:

https://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2010/26oct_solarshield

This is troubling given that one study placed the probability of such an event occurring before 2024 at 12%:

https://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2014/23jul_superstorm

12% is a significant number when the consequences of such a disaster are considered; some experts suggest that damages could cost trillions and take years or even decades to repair the problems caused. Here’s a 2018 report (written by the United States Government Accountability Office) indicating that the risks are not yet fully understood, and the technologies that could be used to limit geomagnetic interference are not ready to be deployed:

https://www.gao.gov/assets/700/696140.pdf



Volcanic Eruptions

This was already mentioned in Part 2 of this article.

And here’s yet another example of a story that some outlets needlessly ran in a click-bait way (much like the A.I. story we covered back in Episode 8 of the Podcast-Audiobook):

https://www.discovermagazine.com/planet-earth/no-nasa-isnt-going-to-drill-to-stop-yellowstone-from-erupting


So while the threat of a supervolcano erupting is rather low, there are still real consequences of volcanic eruptions like the one that occurred in Iceland back in 2010:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2010_eruptions_of_Eyjafjallaj%C3%B6kull



Sustainability

I won’t elaborate here, but I encourage you to check out the two Viable Underdogs books: Uncage Human Ingenuity and A Type 1 Unfreeze-Chain Letter. Here’s a list of problems that are already global crises:

*Air Quality
*Deforestation
*Environmental Degradation
*Extinction
*Global Water Shortages
*Overfishing
*Water Quality


Economics

This will be covered in greater detail at a later date, but evidence of problems in our global economic system can be identified in the 2008 Economic Crisis:

https://www.vox.com/2018/9/18/17868074/financial-crisis-dodd-frank-lehman-brothers-recession

Other areas that have Type 1 considerations are nuclear war, space exploration, virtual reality, automation, etc., but I think that’s enough to cover in this article. As a reminder, it’s not my intent to needlessly create fear or panic. All of these problems have many solutions that could be applied to mitigate or eliminate the crises that can result. I mention these types of problems to remind the world of the need for Type 1 thinking, Type 1 Diagnostics, and Type 1 Consultants. All services I am currently offering, but I can only present my ideas and strategies if you’re 'buying' what I’m 'selling.'



#YouBuying?
#ViableUnderdogs

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UPDATE: Here's a link to a report that outlines Taiwan's overall management of this crisis. Although Taiwan is one of the closest regions to the source of the pandemic, it has been one of the countries that has managed it the most effectively. Strategies such as these could be "blueprint copied" and redistributed to any other region that wishes to implement a similar strategy. More details about blueprint copying will be posted in the future:

Cole, L. (2020). Macdonald-Laurier Institute. How Taiwan is leading by example in the global war on the COVID-19 pandemic. 

And here is a video from Bill Gates regarding his thoughts on the current overall management of the crisis. Gates has been actively involved with this field for years and has been quite vocal on how unprepared we are:


If you search online, there are many more videos and papers that Bill Gates has been involved in. 

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References

**[as stated, there will be a better edited version of Uncage Human Ingenuity that will be released in the future. It’s just very challenging to proofread and edit your own work].

These first 3 sources pertain to the global water crisis. Though, if you research sources on your own, you’ll find much more information (try to find them from more than role like I have done here with the Role of Government and the Role of Information):

Cassella, C., (2019). Science Alert. Nearly 25% of the world’s population faces a water crisis, and we can’t ignore it.
https://www.sciencealert.com/17-countries-are-facing-extreme-water-stress-and-they-hold-a-quarter-of-the-world-s-population

United Nations (N.D.). United Nations. Water.
https://www.un.org/en/sections/issues-depth/water/

World Water Council. (N.D.). World Water Council. Water Crisis.
http://www.worldwatercouncil.org/en/water-crisis






Apple warns coronavirus will hurt iPhone supplies. (2020). BBC News.
https://www.bbc.com/news/business-51539322

AFP (2020). France 24. ‘Selfie app’ to keep track of quarantined Poles.
https://www.france24.com/en/20200320-selfie-app-to-keep-track-of-quarantined-poles

Brown, D., Jones, L., & Palumbo, D., (2020). BBC News. Coronavirus: a visual guide to the economic impact.
https://www.bbc.com/news/business-51706225

Cousin, M., Hong, J., Orlik, T., & Rush, J. (2020). Bloomberg. Coronavirus could cost the global economy $2.7 Trillion. Here’s how.
https://www.bloomberg.com/graphics/2020-coronavirus-pandemic-global-economic-risk/

Crockett, M. J., (2018). The Globe and Mail. Modern outrage is making it harder to better society.
https://www.theglobeandmail.com/opinion/modern-outrage-is-making-it-harder-to-bettersociety/article38179877/

Department of Finance Canada. (2020). Government of Canada. Government introduces Canada Emergency Response Benefit to help workers and businesses.
https://www.canada.ca/en/department-finance/news/2020/03/introduces-canada-emergency-response-benefit-to-help-workers-and-businesses.html

Eaglesham, J., Grind, K., & Rana, P. (2020). The Wall Street Journal. Airbnb racks up hundreds of millions in losses due to Coronavirus.
https://www.wsj.com/articles/airbnb-racks-up-hundreds-of-millions-in-losses-due-to-coronavirus-11584723498

Givetash, L, & Kane, L. (2016). Maclean’s. Airbnb says over half of Vancouver hosts use income to pay rent, mortgage.
https://www.macleans.ca/news/canada/over-half-of-vancouver-airbnb-hosts-use-income-to-pay-rent-mortgage-study/

Harvard Business Review. (2018). HBR’s 10 Must Reads On Strategy for Healthcare. Harvard Business Review Press.

Houser, K., (September, 2019). Futurism. Deepfake Pioneer: “Perfectly real” fake vids are six months away.
https://futurism.com/pioneer-perfect-deepfake-six-months-away

Kamer, F., (2020). Futurism. This MIT and Harvard-built app could slow the spread of Coronavirus.
https://futurism.com/coronavirus-app-mit-safe-paths

Klemetti, E. (2017). Discover. No, NASA isn’t going to drill to stop Yellowstone from erupting.
https://www.discovermagazine.com/planet-earth/no-nasa-isnt-going-to-drill-to-stop-yellowstone-from-erupting

Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Canada. (2018). Government of Canada. Your privacy at airports and borders.
https://www.priv.gc.ca/en/privacy-topics/airports-and-borders/your-privacy-at-airports-and-borders/

Phillips, T. (2014). NASA. Near miss: the solar superstorm of July 2012.
https://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2014/23jul_superstorm

Phillips, T. (2010). NASA. Solar shield - protecting the North American power grid.
https://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2010/26oct_solarshield

Robitzski, D. (2020). Futurism. A growing number of countries tap phone data to track COVID-19.
https://futurism.com/countries-tap-phone-data-track-covid19

Robitzski, D., (2020). Futurism. Even Snopes has been overwhelmed by Coronavirus misinformation.
https://futurism.com/the-byte/snopes-coronavirus-misinformation

Shah, D., (2019). BBC News. Snopes: how do you survive 25 years debunking fake news?
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-48867870

Simchi-Levi, D., & Haren, P., (2020). Harvard Business Review. How Coronavirus could impact the global supply chain by mid-March.
https://hbr.org/2020/02/how-coronavirus-could-impact-the-global-supply-chain-by-mid-march

Stewart, E., (2018). Vox. How close are we to another financial crisis? 8 experts weigh in. https://www.vox.com/2018/9/18/17868074/financial-crisis-dodd-frank-lehman-brothers-recession

Smith, O., (2019). The Telegraph. The unstoppable rise of the Chinese traveler - where are they going and what does it mean for overtourism?
https://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/comment/rise-of-the-chinese-tourist/

United States Government Accountability Office. (2018). Technology Assessment: Critical Infrastructure Protection. Protecting the Electric Grid from Geomagnetic Disturbances.
https://www.gao.gov/assets/700/696140.pdf

The World Bank. (2018). The World Bank. International tourism, number of departures.
https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/ST.INT.DPRT?end=2018&start=1995

Wolverton, Troy. (2020). Business Insider. Airbnb hosts are furious that the company is sticking them with the cost of letting guests cancel due to the coronavirus crisis.
https://www.businessinsider.com/airbnb-hosts-upset-that-theyre-paying-for-its-cancellation-policy-2020-3



There’s a cool updating graph on this site that shows the difference in travel over the last couple decades:

Your Mileage May Vary (2019). How international travelers have change in the past 20 years.
https://yourmileagemayvary.net/2019/10/16/can-you-relate-how-international-travelers-have-changed-in-the-past-20-years/

Wednesday, 18 March 2020

ARTICLE 12 - Part 2: Perception & Social Media Amplification

Viable Underdogs concerns itself with anything that is a Type 1, or global, issue. You can check an outline of all Viable Underdogs books and materials in this post:

Book Links & Other Viable Underdogs Material

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Parts 1 and 3 of this article can be found here: 

Article 12 - Part 1: Incorrect Global Perception 

Article 12 - Part 3: Proof of Compromised Global Communication Channels

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Perception & Social Media Amplification

If you have read any of my books and other material, you'll no doubt be aware of how often I stress the importance of effective communication, likely to the point of annoyance, and this article will be no exception. We’re going to dive a little deeper into an idea that was briefly explored in the book, Uncage Human Ingenuity, and Episode 42 of the Podcast-Audiobook (Technically Episode -5). This problem is known as ‘Social Media Feedback Loops’ or ‘Social Media Amplification.’

Amplification pertains to how one channel of communication can amplify another channel of communication. This, in turn, can make a message, or story, appear much larger than it is due to this amplification. This occurs for two main reasons: the first reason is that a social media post can be reposted over and over within its own platform, and then further reposted as it extends out to other social media platforms. For instance, a celebrity or athlete can declaim their thoughts on pseudo-scientific theories like Flat Earth or Anti-Vaxx on Twitter:

https://sports.yahoo.com/reggie-bush-pushes-disinformation-vaccines-twitter-conversation-070042428.html

This ‘viral’ tweet can then be forwarded onto other social media platforms like Reddit. The second reason for amplification is that this type of click-bait type story becomes appealing to various global news media which are underfunded (See: Fundamental Disruption of Journalism or FALL OF JOURNALISM - Part 6 of Renegades of Disruption).

To be clear, it’s not social media that’s the problem. It’s the required clarification on what constitutes ‘actual news stories,’ and what exactly the impact and consequences should be when the strong influence from the Role of Individuals (in this case, through the usage of social media) overlaps and affects other Roles in our world. In this article, we’ll explore an example of how the Role of Individuals is overlapping the Role of Business, the Role of Information, and finally, the Role of Government.


The 5 Roles That Each Have A Separate Communication Channel

Every individual on the planet is exposed to five main communication channels competing for the individual’s attention. This concept was explored briefly in Part 7 of Renegades of Disruption, and will be explored in more detail in the upcoming book, The Paradox of Civilizations. Here’s a visual representation of the five communication channels every individual on our planet is exposed to (You can click on pictures for bigger version):




Every individual’s exposure is different depending on the level of influence each ‘Role’ has on the individual’s life. For instance, for a non-religious person, the Role of Religion may not exhibit a very strong influence in that individual’s life. Conversely, a person who is very religious is strongly influenced by this Role and corresponding communication channel. However, regardless of the level of influence of each individual role, each of these exhibit overlap with one another. Here’s an example:

Let’s say a particular individual has almost zero exposure from the Role of Religion and the corresponding communication channel, and let’s pretend that the Pope recently publicly made a statement that could be seen as rather controversial. Let’s say he publicly stated he enjoys pineapple on pizza (Obviously, this is a lighthearted example, but hopefully you understand where I am going with this).

Now, when statements that carry a great deal of potential controversy are made, they are often picked up and amplified by other Roles in our World’s Organizational Structure. In this scenario, the Pope’s love of pineapples will make the rounds on Social Media (Part of the Role of Individuals) and News Media (Part of the Role of Information). This means that our initial individual, who normally has zero exposure to the Role of Religion’s communication channel, is now exposed to it since that communication channel is momentarily amplified by two other communication channels: Social Media and News Media.

We’ll explore this idea in more detail by displaying an ongoing problem currently compounding our compromised global communication system: Social Media Amplification.


Social Media (Primarily a Communication Channel for the Role of Individuals)

Social media represents the first time in history that almost any person on the globe can hypothetically gain a world-wide audience. A large audience is rather difficult to achieve since billions are active on social media platforms. Although some businesses and large organizations do have a social media presence, it’s important to keep in mind that this is mostly a communication channel intended for individuals. However, as I have stated, the various roles in our World’s Organizational Structure (See Part 7 of Renegades of Disruption and the upcoming book, The Paradox of Civilizations, for more details on this) tend to overlap one another in many ways, and social media is no exception to this.


BJ’s Water (Analogy from EPISODE 26)

I’ll illustrate the concept of ‘communication channel amplification,’ (or Social Media Feedback Loops) using the analogy of the bottled water business that Carlos and I started in Episode 26:

Let’s say that BJ’s Water was a large publicly-traded enterprise when the city started its investigation into the damaged water aquifer. Once BJ’s Water was named as a possible culprit, it’s more than likely that this news would affect BJ’s Water’s share price in the stock market. This would be the time to hire on a team to handle this potential crisis to the organization. Crisis Managers and Crisis Communicators would be hired on to help mitigate the problems occurring (although, as stated before, communication is often dismissed as unimportant, so many companies and organizations opt not to use these types of services during these crises - See: EPISODE 31, and the book, Crisis Communications, by Steven Fink).

During this ‘crisis,’ Carlos takes to Twitter and Facebook to start sharing his opinions of what is occurring. To be clear, this is Carlos’ personal social media pages, since the crisis communicators are now managing BJ’s’ social media campaign to ensure effective communication.

What Carlos says on his own page is his personal business…. isn’t it?

The official message being sent out by BJ’s’ communication team is that BJ’s is cooperating with the city to develop a solution. However, Carlos mentions that the city is overstepping its boundaries, and assures stakeholders that BJ’s will not be paying for damages, nor cooperating with the city, since there is no conclusive proof that BJ’s damaged the aquifer (despite strong scientific evidence suggesting otherwise). Although, Carlos only has one third the number of followers that BJ’s Water has on social media, the general public is informed of Carlos’ tweets contradicting BJ’s official statements as his tweets make the rounds throughout various social media platforms and news outlets. Carlos wasn’t officially speaking for the company, since his social media page is Part of the Role of Individuals, and the company was looking to cooperate, as stated on their official social media platforms. Despite BJ’s Water’s true intent, Carlos’ personal social media ramblings are then amplified by news media who then distribute the message to a much larger audience than his number of social media followers.

These conflicting messages, originating from two separate communication channels, then result in further lowering the share price of BJ’s Water, as investors and the market start questioning BJ’s ability to manage this crisis.


Role of Individuals (Social Media) Overlapping The Role of Business

One of the main questions to ask is: should news media be reporting on Carlos’ personal social media page? That’s a question you need to answer for yourself, but keep in mind, this type of Social Media Amplification occurs all the time around the globe. Here’s one such example:

https://www.wired.com/story/elon-musk-twitter-stock-tweets-libel-suit/

Elon Musk’s Twitter, as of March, 2020, has just under 32 million (a decent following to be sure, but representing a fraction of a percent of the global population), but his audience grows exponentially when others repost his thoughts on other social media platforms, which eventually means these viral posts are further amplified once news sources report on the story. Theoretically, Musk’s tweet is intended for his followers, but now, due to Social Media Amplification (or ‘Social Media Feedback Loops’), his tweet finds a massive global audience, even for those who do not have a social media presence. (And remember, although 32 million is a respectable number, it’s not like they’re exclusively his followers - most people follow more than one person on social media. None of this is to comment one way or the other on Musk’s business decisions, whether you like the guy or not. That’s not my point. I’m just sometimes too tired to invent another analogy).

Other than a small Instagram page I have (primarily used for prior social experiments on the perception of sustainability - see Podcast-Audiobook for more details), I have no social media presence. If I want to know what Elon Musk’s personal thoughts are on Twitter, I can easily access his page should I wish to do so, however, although I never have, I’m well aware of many of his personal thoughts and various marketing strategies (he’s a brilliant promoter on various social media networks) due to the fact that many of his tweets exit his personal communication channel (his Twitter) to global news communication channels. I read about his tweets through various news feeds.

Although none of his personal tweets were official statements being made by his company’s board of directors (Tesla), they heavily impacted Tesla’s share price. This presents another question: should leaders like CEO’s of large publicly-traded organizations have personal social media pages? Again, this is up to you to decide.

In the world of sports, handling the personal social media accounts of its athletes has become a large point of discussion. Here’s one such example of a policy implemented in the National Hockey League (NHL):

https://www.nhl.com/flames/news/nhl-institutes-new-social-media-policy/c-588608

Although policies such as these could help address the problem I just outlined in publicly-traded organizations, I’m personally never a fan of restriction on speech. Another option would merely be to clarify what constitutes news and what doesn’t. If a personal CEO’s social media page is decided to be regarded as news, that other communication channels will then amplify, then these should be considered official communication from the company itself. The reason for this logic is that there is a clear overlap between the Role of Individuals and the Role of Business, since an individual’s personal comments affect a business’ operations and profits. If the individual’s personal comments are not regarded as news, then the tweets themselves should never leave the original communication channel (in Musk’s case, this would be his 32 million followers).

As stated before, if I am interested in anyone’s public social media page, I know where to go looking for it. However, it appears we have globally decided that social media and tweets are newsworthy, which means there are overlapping roles that should be treated as such. Prior to the creation of social media, an individual CEO’s remarks on a news network would have been considered an official statement, would it not? If that’s the case, then nothing really has changed, except that any individual can make any statement anytime they want. And if they’re really clever, then can clog up a communication channel by saturating it with messages (Loukides, M., 2019).

The previous examples are examples of the overlapping Role of Individuals (mostly through social media) with the Role of Business, so let’s next take a look at the Role of Individuals (again through social media) overlapping with the Role of Information.

Social Media Feedback Loops (EPISODE 42)

The Role of Information overlapping the Role of Individuals (mainly through Social Media networks) is very troubling due to one main reason:

Social Media is known to have a rampant problem of misinformation and disinformation. This means it is a communication channel that is largely unreliable. Conversely, the Role of Information is intended to be a very reliable communication channel. This includes news outlets and Academia all around the globe. Over the last decade or two, a known reliable communication channel (mostly comprised of news outlets - part of the Role of Information) has become heavily overlapped with a known unreliable communication channel (Social Media - Part of the Role of Individuals). This is one of the factors that have contributed to the Fall of Journalism (Fundamental Disruption of Journalism - See: Part 6 of Renegades of Disruption).

It should not come as much of a surprise that Social Media can strongly influence our ability to globally communicate. As just one example of the various ways this happens, here’s an example of a Social Media Feedback Loop that has occurred between Social Media and Journalists:

Now, I’m going to go ahead and hazard a guess that 99% of people out there do not believe the Earth is flat. This means the number of flat Earth believers are less than 77 million people. Its probably a lot less than that, but whatever.

So, 99%, or more, of our global population believes, without question, that the Earth is round.

According to Everett Rogers, there exists a miniscule amount of our population that refuse to change their minds regardless of how much evidence is presented to them, (Beerendonk, S., N.D.). This can even occur in science, as we have demonstrated when we mentioned hygiene and sterilization during Surgery (Cartwright, F., 2019). In Renegades of Disruption, I refer to these individuals as ‘extreme laggards.’

The existence of Flat Earthers was likely always there. The reason you are now hearing more about them is that the Internet afforded them the ability to locate and communicate with one another. The Fall of Journalism means that this type of click-bait story becomes necessary for some outlets to run so they can remain profitable. This, in turn, means the story gains more exposure form Journalists. Then, this can lead to people assuming the group is much larger than it is.

Then science correspondents weigh in on the issue. This means they do media interviews and upload videos on YouTube. In this scenario, the science correspondent is primarily acting from the Role of Individuals since they are acting of their own personal accord. However, there is strong overlap here with the Role of Information, since this is why the science correspondent has the number of followers that they do.

Then the story is once again picked up by media, since it’s popular. Then, this creates a false public perception, because the story has become much larger than it ever had a right becoming (Sample, I., 2019.). Then, and this is quite ironic, the additional exposure invites more people to join these groups (Sample, I., 2019.). And this ridiculous cycle repeats itself until we reach a point where a YouTube video about Flat Earthers has millions of views, and a Global Crisis Message is largely ignored.

Note: The Global Crisis Message refers to the United Nations message that was sent out over a year ago in September of 2018. (Secretary-General’s remarks on climate change [as delivered], 2018).

Here is an example of one such flat Earth video (as of March 2020, this episode has 5.4 million views):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hLPPE3_DVCw

And here’s the mentioned United Nation’s video (as of March 2020, this episode has just 28 thousand views - almost 200 times less views - see episode 42 for the relevance of this comparison):

United Nations Global Crisis Message (Sept., 2018)



Posts Never ‘Die’ Online - ‘ECHOES’…

Prior to the Internet, news was typically always up-to-date. Yesterday’s newspapers were already in the recycling bin, and today’s newspaper was what was being read. However, these days, an article can continue to get passed along through various social media and news media until it becomes difficult to track the source of the story itself. Any story posted online remains there, which makes it difficult to communicate messages due to the ‘echo’ of old news stories. This adds to Information Saturation (See: Renegades of Disruption).


Only 1 Crisis At A Time, Please

In March, 2020, there are two global ongoing crises occurring at the same time: The Coronavirus Crisis and the Sustainability Crisis. However, due to the many problems I have identified in our global communication system, we are only able to somewhat effectively communicate 1 crisis at a time (I say ‘somewhat,’ due to the known misinformation / disinformation problems occurring - See 
Coronavirus Article). This becomes troubling due to the large number of potential crises that can occur from any number of Type 1 problems. For instance, what would we currently do if another volcano erupted like in 2010?:

https://www.forbes.com/sites/trevornace/2017/11/01/experts-warn-icelands-biggest-volcano-is-ready-to-erupt/#63ffcbd91f0c

https://www.severe-weather.eu/news/iceland-volcano/

The financial damages of that crisis totaled in the billions, and experts are suggesting that other volcanoes can have an even greater impact if they erupt. The problems include disruptions to air travel (which includes supply chain issues), health problems, and agriculture.This is merely an example, but there are many different types of global crises that can occur, and the more time that goes on, the higher the likelihood that more than one will occur simultaneously. In fact, it’s already happening, in case anyone wants to further bury their heads in the sand rather than face the reality I present. As a reminder, this can all be solved. I am trying my best to sell my Global Systems Consulting Services after all.


Should Politicians’ Personal Social Media Count As ‘News?’

The last example we will explore is the Role of Individuals (again, from personal social media pages of the respective individuals) overlapping with the Role of Government. The big question is: what exactly does a message from an elected leader’s social media signify? Is it held to the same standard as official statements made by the government itself? For well over a decade, this has never been clarified (Smith, A., 2009), leading many to wonder if a bad tweet could inadvertently start a war:

https://www.cbc.ca/radio/thecurrent/the-current-for-january-30-2018-1.4509065/could-a-tweet-start-a-war-how-smartphones-and-social-media-are-creating-new-battlegrounds-1.4509069

The article makes reference to the current American president, however, this really started with the previous administration:

https://www.theverge.com/2012/12/3/3724256/barack-obama-twitter-town-hall-policy-fiscal-cliff

Although the current administration and the previous administration are on opposite sides of the political spectrum, both have utilized social media, and the subsequent amplification provided by social media feedback loops and news media, to promote themselves and market their campaigns. This means that democratic elections are now partially influenced by the level of skill each candidate displays in social media marketing.

Regardless of your opinion on the political policies of any administration or political official, this overlap of the Role of Government and The Role of Individuals becomes quite problematic when an elected official’s social media posts can flood global communication channels, which are already saturated, and thereby hijack global communication. Regardless of where you are on the globe, there are certain politicians, celebrities, and CEO’s whose every controversial thought become sweet temptations for underfunded journalism to run these click-bait type stories (See: 
Fall of Journalism).


Incorrect Global Perception

Part 1 of this Article explored the idea that there is currently an ‘alarm’ going off in the world that only people with low associative barriers (who also have read, or already intuitively understand, the majority of material presented by Viable Underdogs) can hear. If reading my books and articles, and listening to my podcast does not immediately create a strong sense of urgency within you, then I suggest your associative barriers are still too high.

Here is the same picture presented at the start of the article on the subject of the various ‘messages’ being diffused on the ongoing Sustainability Crisis:



Depending on what source any individual is exposed to the most will most heavily influence which of the three messages the individual believes most strongly (3 messages: “It’s a crisis.” “It’s a problem, but not a crisis.” “There is no problem.”). However, due to the high level of role overlap, and subsequent communication channel overlap, all three messages are directly or indirectly communicated to every single person on the globe.

Keep in mind, much like how many have denied the severity of the Sustainability Crisis, so too did some initially deny the severity of the Coronavirus Crisis until the problem had become so bad that denial was no longer possible. The cruise ship, in this analogy, was already engulfed in flames.

I hope your associative barriers are low enough. If not, I’d advise you to re-read my books or re-listen to the podcast. There is a lot of information that I doubt anyone could fully digest on the first read through. I have to re-read my own work quite frequently just so I can better understand these ideas and build upon them (Bridging a 70 year gap in Academia is no easy task).

Do you understand that there is a global alarm that was activated by our global governments in September, 2018? An alarm that was subsequently activated by The Vatican (as part of the Role of Religion), and responsible journalists and academics (as part of the Role of Information). This alarm was intended to shift public perception on the Sustainability Crisis to increase urgency. The same urgency currently felt by the Coronavirus Crisis on March 18, 2020.

However, due to all the factors I have outlined in all my work (including this issue of Social Media Amplification), this alarm is only being heard by one person. Me.

I am tired of listening to an ‘alarm’ that only I can hear. I hope you succeed in successfully lowering your associative barriers to the point you can hear it too. Only then can we all start correcting the problem. Don’t stress too much if you can ‘hear’ it. My biggest concern at this point is that I will never articulate myself in such a way to get others to hear it. If you can hear it, there’s hope, but you have to help me spread this ‘alarm.’

We’re both passengers on the ‘Earth Cruise Ship,’ and our warning systems (alarm systems) are compromised. This can be seen for both short-term crises (like Coronavirus) and long-term crises (like Sustainability). We have two fires that are currently spreading. One is more accelerated, but likely won’t sink the ship (Coronavirus), while the other one is a tad slower, but if left unchecked, will result in sinking the entire ship - our Earth Cruise Ship (Sustainability). And I assure you, the severity and frequency of these types of global crises will both increase as time goes on. The urgency on sustainability should currently match the urgency on coronavirus, but this has not occurred.

Although I have diagnosed the problem (the malfunctioning alarm) and have created a strategy to overcome all of these challenges simultaneously (Viable Underdogs), this strategy only works if others buy into it.

Are your associative barriers low enough?

Can you hear this global ‘alarm?’

Are you ‘buying’ what I’m ‘selling?’

#YouBuying?
#ViableUnderdogs

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References


Baer, J., (2018). Yahoo Sports. Reggie Bush pushes disinformation about vaccines in twitter ‘conversation.’
https://sports.yahoo.com/reggie-bush-pushes-disinformation-vaccines-twitter-conversation-070042428.html

Beerendonk, S., (N.D.). Silverside. Understanding Rogers Adoption Curves.
https://www.silverside.com/understanding-rogers-adoption-curve/

Cartwright, F., (2019). Encyclopaedia Britannica. Joseph Lister.
https://www.britannica.com/biography/Joseph-Lister-Baron-Lister-of-Lyme-Regis

Davies, A., (2018). Wired. A Brief History on Elon Musk’s market-moving tweets.
https://www.wired.com/story/elon-musk-twitter-stock-tweets-libel-suit/

Flis, A., (2019). Severe Weather Europe. Volcanoes in Iceland are slowly waking up. Which one will erupt first?

https://www.severe-weather.eu/news/iceland-volcano/ 

Goldenthal, H., (2018). CBC The Current. Could a tweet start a war? How smartphones and social media are creating new battlegrounds.
https://www.cbc.ca/radio/thecurrent/the-current-for-january-30-2018-1.4509065/could-a-tweet-start-a-war-how-smartphones-and-social-media-are-creating-new-battlegrounds-1.4509069



**The following article explores the idea of social media amplification, feedback loops, and deepfake technology (See: Uncage Human Ingenuity). As always, I’m not the only one to present this type of idea:

Loukides, M., (2019). Quartz. The biggest problem with social media has nothing to do with free speech.
https://qz.com/1714598/information-feedback-loops-make-social-media-more-dangerous/

Nace, T., (2017). Forbes. Experts warn Iceland's biggest volcano is 'ready to erupt.'

Sample, I., (2019). The Guardian. Study blames YouTube for rise in number of Flat Earthers.
https://www.theguardian.com/science/2019/feb/17/study-blames-youtube-for-rise-in-number-of-flat-earthers

Smith, A., (2009). Pew Research Center. The Internet’s role in campaign 2008.
https://www.pewresearch.org/internet/2009/04/15/the-internets-role-in-campaign-2008/

Sottek, T.C., (2012). The Verge. Beyond the election, President Obama uses Twitter to push his agenda to the public.
https://www.theverge.com/2012/12/3/3724256/barack-obama-twitter-town-hall-policy-fiscal-cliff

Staff Writers / Calgary Flames (2011). NHL. NHL institutes new social media policy.
https://www.nhl.com/flames/news/nhl-institutes-new-social-media-policy/c-588608

Star Talk. (2018). YouTube: StarTalk. Neil Tyson demonstrates absurdity of flat Earth.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hLPPE3_DVCw

United Nations (2018). United Nations. UN Chief on Climate Change and his vision for the 2019 Climate Change Summit.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jsi5Vp_6tdE

Tuesday, 17 March 2020

ARTICLE 9 - Part 2: Understanding the Numbers

Viable Underdogs concerns itself with anything that is a Type 1, or global, issue. You can check an outline of all Viable Underdogs books and materials in this post:

Book Links & Other Viable Underdogs Material

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NOTES: Here’s the first part of this article:

Article 9 - Part 1

Also, this article is a continuation from EPISODE 38 in the Podcast-Audiobook that explains the reasons behind some of the strategies implemented and/or abandoned.

This article explains the current strategy I will be employing to begin the second attempt at a successful launch. This article may not be interesting to every reader, but it is important to have articles like these available for viewing to maintain transparency. At no point have I tried to be secretive about my process or strategies.


UPDATE: April 15, 2020: 

As predicted, the first part of the second launch did not yield more results than the first launch at convincing journalists or academics. My hope is that some responsible journalists and academics will come on board in the future. The first part of the second launch attempt has been added at the end of this article. 

The second part of this launch will commence on April 20, 2020. Stay Tuned...


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The (Failed) First Launch (Aug-Sept, 2019)

The Podcast-Audiobook (Episodes 1 - 37) were completed and published on August 14, 2019. Shortly thereafter, I commenced the first attempt at launching the idea. The idea behind Viable Underdogs is laterally combining the ideas behind Kurt Lewin’s Change Process with an altruistic chain letter. Viable Underdogs exists in more than one communication channel within the Role of Individuals (See Renegades of Disruption, and the upcoming book, The Paradox of Civilizations, for more info on these ‘Roles’). Viable Underdogs currently exists in three main channels - A podcast channel, a blog channel, and a video channel (See all links and downloads at the start of this article). The hashtag (#YouBuying?) is intended to further increase the reach within other news media channels and social media channels. To be clear, this strategy is an opt-in strategy. I only ask people to spread this altruistic chain-letter if they answer ‘Yes’ to the question I continue to ask you all: If you’re buying what I’m selling?

Here was what was attempted within the previous launch:

First, the strategies were sent to various news media (and select academics I thought may be receptive to the idea) all around the globe. 


Second, two separate strategies were created to target social media platforms. On Instagram, I launched the $5000 Sustainability Challenge, and on Reddit, I attempted to spread these ideas on forums already concerned about sustainability.

The $5000 Sustainability Challenge served two purposes - the first was my hopes that regardless of the reception of the challenge (both the challenge itself and the way in which is was marketed), five grand would be enough dinero to make some people see how serious I was, and maybe a few of them could then be bothered to review my work. The second was that I was starting to suspect the perception was even further off than what I had initially thought, and this social experiment could provide some insight.

The results of the Reddit campaign can be found in Episode 41 of the Podcast (currently, that’s the only format it is available in). This also helped me better understand the perception of the Sustainability Crisis.


Why The First Launch Failed

There are two main reasons the first launch failed, and I can only hope that there is nothing else I have overlooked for the second launch I will soon be attempting.

The first reason was the slow acceptance of new ideas (See: Renegades of Disruption). Although, I already knew that this was going to add to the challenge of presenting and ‘selling’ these disruptive ideas, I had underestimated the extent of this challenge. Once the Podcast-Audiobook, and the first book, Uncage Human Ingenuity, were completed, it was only then I realized that I should have researched and written Renegades of Disruption first.

The second reason is that I assumed there were some people on this planet that understood the immediate urgency of the Sustainability Crisis, and I was approaching many individuals and organizations under that assumption. If you read the article on PERCEPTION, you’ll then understand why it’s not really all that surprising that no one responded. Even if anyone I reached out to did listen to the entire podcast (The statistics I track on the Podcast indicate that no party I reached out to during my first launch listened to the Podcast in its entirety), it did not account for the severity of the perception problem.

Upon reflection, there required additional material to help further alter the current perception of the crisis to the present reality - the need for urgency. This was why I wrote the three books, Uncage Human Ingenuity, Renegades of Disruption, and A Type 1 Unfreeze-Chain Letter, prior to attempting this second launch. The combination of all present material, I hope, is adequate to further shift public perception closer to the reality of the situation. At the very bottom of this article, I will include the email that was sent out to most news outlets during the first attempted launch. For the record, when I wrote this, my understanding was there were some individuals that carried the same level of urgency I did, which is why it was written in the manner it was. However, now that I better understand public perception, it becomes clearer why this approach was unsuccessful. With these new insights in mind, I’ll now explain to you exactly what I will be attempting with the second launch.


Requirements to be Considered:

Neutrality

The are five main channels of communication that these ideas need to spread through (From the five Roles in World’s Organizational Structure). However, it’s important to keep in mind that some channels will yield a higher likelihood of success than others. See Renegades of Disruption for more info on these five Roles. The Role of Individuals is the best channel, since by nature, it is already ‘globally neutral.’ The Role of Information is the second best option, since some of the major fields within the Role (Journalism and Academia) are supposed to adhere to a code of ethics and neutrality. However, as I have outlined, in recent years, this neutrality, and therefore the public’s trust, have diminished. The other three Roles are not ever really neutral. The Roles of Government, Business, and Religion often have issues and challenges that lean considerably away from neutrality. There is nothing inherently good or bad about this, but it here is an example of the challenge this currently causes me:

Let’s say I successfully sell my ideas to my government, the Government of Canada, and they start to promote these ideas within my nation and also internationally. If the current administration within my country is liberal or left-leaning, then those who support a conservative or right-leaning administration may be inclined to distrust the idea due to issues I have outlined in some detail in Part 4 of Renegades of Disruption. The same types of issues occur within the Role of Business and the Role of Religion - distrust that can occur from differing ideals and viewpoints. This may happen both within my own nation as well as internationally if other nations or individuals within these nations suspect my government has an ulterior motive.

‘Noise’ in Communication Channels

Ideally, the Viable Underdogs Unfeeze-Chain Letter would be diffused in a mostly quiet communication channel, but these days, most communication channels are rather noisy due to information saturation (See Renegades of Disruption) and Social Media Amplification (See upcoming article on amplification). While the Unfreeze-Chain Letter will eventually exploit both of these weaknesses in our communication systems to accelerate the rate in which this idea spreads, it makes the initial launch much more difficult. It’s also the main reason I still have not resorted to spam-posting everywhere. Spam-posting is the last ditch-effort, since there is literally no strategy to it. At this point, I still have a few other strategies up my sleeve to try out first.


Journalism

Now that the two main problems pertaining to the initial launch have been addressed (Problem #1 - The Slow Acceptance of New Ideas and Problem #7 - Incorrect Global Perception), then a second attempt at contacting news media can be attempted. As well, the addition of referenced books I have written might make Viable Underdogs appear more legitimate (Rather than only approaching them with the Podcast-Audiobook and the videos I did during my first launch).

I will attempt to get their attention by leading with a book, Renegades of Disruption, and  ARTICLE 10. In Article 10, by comparing the level of urgency between two ongoing crises (Sustainability and COVID-19), it might help others make these connections for themselves.



As well, much like I mentioned on Page 144 of A Type 1 Unfreeze-Chain Letter, we will quickly find out which journalists and outlets still adhere to journalistic standards and ethics.

NOTE: Although I have made unfavourable comments towards the field of Journalism and Academia, it was never with the intent to imply that every individual within each field is responsible for the problems I identified. After all, the references I often use are from journalists and academics. However, their professional fields require close to 100% adherence to ethics and integrity. Once the number starts to drop, it causes the entire field to be called into question. To be abundantly clear, there are many responsible academics and journalists all over the globe and my hope is that they will also help me spread these ideas. 

This will be the first part of this second launch. Hopefully, this will be successful, but I do have other strategies ready to use. Unfortunately, the next strategy I currently have (if I don’t think up another) is even greasier than the $5000 Sustainability Challenge. Ideally, this one should not become necessary should my second attempt to gain audience with Journalism works. If it doesn’t, then this article will be updated with the next strategy I will be employing.


Feedback

For both my first and second launch, I have asked for feedback, but have often received very little. If the material in all the books, videos, and articles is confusing or convoluted, it’s not because I wanted to do all of this on my own. I legitimately thought the Podcast was going to be adequate when I started out, but I underestimated the power of associative barriers, cognitive fallacies, social factors, and psychological factors outlined in Part 4 of Renegades of Disruption.


If The Second Launch Works

For the sake of transparency, I must mention that I am unsure exactly how this Unfreeze-Chain Letter will diffuse throughout our various global communication channels. This is one of the reasons I am hopeful to get some news outlets on board. I suspect they have the ability to ‘cushion’ some of the disruption and challenges this may initially cause.

Although there is little doubt in my mind that my overall strategy will work, it is difficult for me to predict exactly what will occur since there is nothing else to base this on. Nothing on this large scale or magnitude has ever before been attempted in the history of our species. To be clear, if and when this idea works, this will clearly display the vulnerabilities of our communication systems. After all, there is no reason why a chain letter should be able to hijack our communication systems on the level that will be required to succeed. And this is the other reason why I continuously remind you that this is an opt-in system. The larger Viable Underdogs grows, the larger the amount of individuals who have answered ‘Yes’ and agree with the majority of the strategy (since 100% agreement is highly unlikely for everyone on this planet). The only thing I seek to implement at this time is to display the vulnerabilities of our global systems, which will start with the communication systems. I have zero desire to push other agendas.


There’s No One Else

I am doing this on my own. No one else should be held accountable for the strategy I will undertake. I undertake this not because I have any desire for the level of fame this may entail, nor anything else. I only undertake this entire strategy due to the high stakes of what my research represents - something that will not make sense to you unless the Unfreeze has reached a global audience, or you have managed to lower your associative barriers (Hopefully both). I consider myself no different than individuals like Stanislav Petrov (See EPISODE 31). I’m just a regular guy forced to step up and solve a problem virtually no one on our planet even realizes exists.

This is the main reason I have not added my name to my work. For starters, I feel it would be unethical to brand all this work as my own due to the amount of assistance the books and works I cited helped craft these strategies. I’d much rather share any fame with the authors of these respective books and works. As well, while I have no issue to further explain my ideas to any audience that wishes me to do so, I tend to enjoy my privacy. Low-level fame isn’t the end of the world, but I’d much rather ‘Viable Underdogs’ become the common household name, rather than my own name.

Motivation / Incentive

As stated, this Sustainability Crisis has escalated to the point of possible survival for our species. Preventing our own extinction was always the main motivation for all the work I have performed. If I am successful, then compensation for my work would be appreciated. I have already stated the value I place on these strategies, but this is a choice I ultimately leave up to all of you.


What You Can do

There are two things I ask of any audience. Promoting these ideas, books, videos, and podcast episodes in your online and offline networks is the easiest and most helpful thing anyone can do. As well, feel free to create your own content that further explains and simplifies these ideas. If you have questions, then I encourage you to get in touch (viableunderdogs@gmail.com). The only thing I ask if you decide to make your own material is to refer your own audience back to Viable Underdogs as well. This minimizes the possibility of misinformation and disinformation, which our world is currently highly vulnerable to until I correct the global communication system with the Unfreeze-Chain Letter. As of now, Viable Underdogs has not partnered up with any other individual or organization. If this changes, it will be updated.


Launch #1

Below is what was sent to the majority of news outlets during the first launch. Since I am well aware it failed miserably, I ask you not to judge too harshly. As a reminder, my claim is that my main area of expertise is in the diagnosis and repair of complicated systems. I am a Generalist everywhere else, so my skill level at selling disruptive ideas is at amateur level (and that’s probably being generous).




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Thank you in advance for taking valuable time out of your day to read this email.

Attached in this email is research outlining a divergence within academic fields that has been occurring for over 70 years. As you can imagine, this would entail some profound consequences. By combining fields, we can employ some very neat, innovative, and unorthodox solutions to many global problems.

However, it is important to remember that we have learned a lot in the last 70 years. If I went back to the 1950’s with a smart phone, it would indeed appear like magic to some people living during that time. But, for those curious and interested enough, explanations could be offered about how they operate. The biggest challenge would be finding those curious and interested enough to learn a large volume of new material required to understand the significance of a smart phone (wireless communication, internet, search engines, etc.).

I provide substantial proof for all the claims I make. I admit they are quite bold, which unfortunately leads some people to be dismissive of the claims. However, I really do want to stress that I provide evidence and sources for everything.

Included below are my main claims, as well as videos I have created to simplify these concepts in a couple minutes. The videos themselves are meant as supplementary material to the Research Paper I have created. The Research Paper was then converted into a Podcast, to more easily promote and share these ideas. I have presented this idea to a few people who agree with my claims. But this typically takes a couple hours (Hence the Podcast). A link to the Podcast is included following my claims.


HERE ARE MY CLAIMS:

Claim #1:

In the event of a global crisis, our ability to communicate a global crisis message is compromised:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fcmRwHGamhg (4 Minutes Long)


Claim #2:

According to the United Nations, The Vatican, The Guardian, NASA, and many other legitimate organizations, we are in a sustainability (climate) crisis:
https://www.un.org/en/sections/issues-depth/climate-change/

https://www.vaticannews.va/en/pope/news/2019-06/pope-declares-climate-emergency.html

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/may/17/why-the-guardian-is-changing-the-language-it-uses-about-the-environment



Claim #3:

I have unorthodox solutions regarding the problem I just mentioned, as well as solutions to many other problems in global sustainability. As just one example, we can employ a concept called ‘Blueprint Copying.’ Here’s a quote form the book: “How to Change the World: Social Entrepreneurs and the Power of New Ideas” by David Bornstein that outlines this idea:

“In India, the disability movement…accelerated its progress by copying the American blueprint. In Brazil, the consumer protection movement also copied – and improved upon – the American blueprint, with great success. During the 1990’s, micro-credit spread to almost every corner of the globe because…concerted efforts [were made] to distribute the blueprint – the how tos – not just the concept.”

Here is a video briefly explaining how we can use this concept to accelerate change in Sustainability: 

(3 minutes Long)


Claim #4:

Using lateral thinking, I combined Management, Communication, and Economic concepts to Sustainability to help address some of our sustainability problems.

This video briefly explains the idea behind Lateral Thinking if it is unfamiliar to you:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I4OWWHNDcow
(3 Minutes Long)


Claim #5:

Some of these concepts from the Business field are over 70 years old. Meaning there has been a divergence occurring within academia. You can learn more about why this is in this video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ez3HNBaT6yE
(4 Minutes Long)

All of the videos are available to view on the Channel Name ‘Viable Underdogs’ on YouTube.


Here is a link to the Podcast:

Viable Underdogs
(Available on Spotify, iTunes, & Google Play, and Podbean):

https://viableunderdogs.podbean.com/

***All of the proposed solutions have smaller scale proof of concept***


The Viable Underdogs podcast is designed to be a Crash Course, which means there is a lot of material to explore. For this reason, I wrote it in a unique way to save as much time as possible. Here is a listening guide on how the Podcast can be listened to:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lATWyGj0BfE 
(3 Minutes Long)

EPISODES 1 – 36: Research Paper that outlines and proves a 70-year long divergence between the fields of Science and Business within Academia.
EPISODE 36: Table of Contents & Executive Summary (35 minutes long)
EPISODE 39: Brief 10 Minute Summary quickly outlining the entirety of the Podcast
As well, here is a short preview of some of the concepts explored:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0qscgIod-Iw 
(6 Minutes Long)

For those 2 . 5% of Journalists / News Media interested, please either respond via email (viableunderdogs@gmail.com) if you have any questions or require any clarification, or simply forward this email on to others you feel may also be interested. I will happily chat with anyone over the phone (or in person if the distance is reasonable) should you be interested in running this story.

I understand your time is valuable. If you decide to contact me and I cannot at least pique your curiosity, I will happily reimburse you for your time at whatever your hourly rate is.

#YouBuying?



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UPDATE: April 15, 2020

Here is a copy of the email that was sent out during this second launch. Once again, please don't judge too harshly since my area of expertise is not in selling disruptive ideas via email:




Solutions to Sustainability & The Coronavirus Pandemic. #YouBuying?

Quite a few months back, I reached out to many individuals and organizations around the globe with a claim that I have solutions to our Sustainability Crisis. To back up this claim, I have since written three separate books (with many references and sources throughout), created 8 separate videos that further attempt to explore the ideas, recorded an audiobook that provides an overview of all the material presented, and I am in the process of writing my fourth book, which should be completed by the end of 2020 (though I’ll admit, my motivation for writing this material is starting to wane a bit due to a lack of traction with these ideas).

I’m not a professional writer, nor am I an expert in ‘selling’ these types of disruptive ideas. In truth, I’m at a complete loss for how to gain anyone’s interest and attention for these ideas, including anyone I send this email to.

In my mind, these ideas should sell themselves. Here are the titles of the current three books (all can be downloaded for free at the link I leave below):

Book #1:

Renegades of Disruption: How To Overcome Humanity’s Overwhelming Resistance To Change & New Ideas.

Book #2:

Uncage Human Ingenuity: A Realistic, Profitable Global Transition to Sustainability Within 10 Years.

Book #3:

A Type 1 Unfreeze-Chain Letter: Laterally Applying Change Management Concepts To Correct Compromised Global Communication Channels.
Here’s a link that includes Free PDF Downloads of the books:

https://viableunderdogs.blogspot.com/2020/02/book-links-other-viable-underdogs.html

All of the strategies outlined in the books and articles can also be applied to correct known problems currently occurring on the subject of the Coronavirus Pandemic. Here’s an article that briefly explores this idea:

https://viableunderdogs.blogspot.com/2020/03/article-10-part-2-outbreak-of-terrible.html

I strongly recommend you read ‘Renegades of Disruption’ first, as it lays the foundation for all other information I present. If you do read it, please keep in mind that my field of expertise is not in writing. Although the books collectively represent thousands of hours of solid research and work, I have written these on my own without the help of an editor. There are minor mistakes present, and I hope these mistakes do not detract you from the underlying points I am attempting to make.

Below is the initial ‘attention grabber’ included at the start of the book, Renegades of Disruption, to hopefully pique your interest in the rest of my work. I realize asking you to read an entire book is quite the ask, and as I said, I don’t know how to make that ‘sale.’

However, if I truly do have solutions to our Sustainability Crisis and Coronavirus Crisis (among a plethora of other wild claims), then those solutions would make this story the journalistic scoop of a lifetime.


From Page 4 of Renegades of Disruption:

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Here are some attention grabbers to see if this book is of any interest to you:
-Although the underlying cause of scurvy was determined as far back as 1601, The British Navy didn’t implement processes to eliminate it for almost 200 years. Still better than the British Board of trade, who required 270 years.

-The dangers associated with lead poisoning have been suspected for at least 2000 years, and yet, during the early 20th century, us humans decided to add lead to fuel in cars, despite warnings from scientists indicating this was not a good idea dating back as far as the 1920’s, and yet, it still took another 50 years for those warnings to start being taken seriously. 
-We humans have burned scientists at the stake when they propose ideas that are already 1800 years old.
-We humans initially dismissed the findings of a medical doctor who suggested a crazy idea: that sterilization and hand-washing are kind of important ideas in medicine.
Historically, anytime an idea is new and presents a fairly wild idea (like vastly increasing the likelihood of surviving surgery), it is met with resistance, derision, or dismissal. Feel free to forward onto the next part of the book where I provide a sampling of the large amount of evidence to support this claim.


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#YouBuying?
#ViableUnderdogs

A Seventy Seven Million Dollar Chalk Mark

Viable Underdogs Preface “There are many dubious stories in the history of ideas, and some, despite their improbability, make valid...